The morning of the murder of the MP Jo Cox – this poster was made public.
5 years ago – our prime minister declared the death of multiculturalism.
Jo Cox stood up for the good in difference. That we have more in Common than what separates us. That people are good. That a British strength comes from togetherness.
Her Husband released this statement after her murder
“Jo believed in a better world and she fought for it every day of her life with an energy, and a zest for life that would exhaust most people.
“She would have wanted two things above all else to happen now, one that our precious children are bathed in love and two, that we all unite to fight against the hatred that killed her. Hate doesn’t have a creed, race or religion, it is poisonous.”
The hatred that killed her, came in the form of 52-year-old Yorkshire man Thomas Mair.
His motivations were ideological, political.
What to call him / it was disputed in the media.
Regardless of reports that Mair shouted “Britain first” or words to that effect, the media ran with the narrative of a crazed loner – and later, a lone wolf.
This was done to absolve society of blame – and to tone down the violent assassination of an elected member of parliament, in broad daylight, outside a library in her hometown.
Much of the media refused to call it what it is. Terrorism. And it was the second time in a week that the media had refused to acknowledge why the victims (of an attack) were chosen.
Mairs’ Ideology, his reasoning, was irrelevant because he was mad. Yet others on social media pointed out a contradiction.
As more information was gathered it became clear that the attack was a terrorist attack.
I have argued before that the war with terrorists is one of ideologies. HOW WE REACT TO TERRORIST ATTACKS 2/3
Those afraid to denounce such attacks, objectively foster this seismic shift to the right. Toward Fascism.
It is the culmination of over a decade of irresponsible and ignorant reporting, governmental policy. And it now manifests itself in populist political leaders pretending to offer dangerous and simplified solutions to scared and confused individuals.
In this battle of ideas – many may see the questioning of their own values as an imperative opportunity to reinforce their identity. It is this(false) choice that is weakening the ability of a democratic, practical resistance.
I further argued that the ideologies of Neo liberalism and Facism – blind allegiance to the flag – to that of divisions…
are two ideologies that represent a schism, and the threat of a sundering within western liberal democracy. This reaffirms the idea of a paradox of polarisation within the new ideological conflict posed by the terrorist threats.
I was writing specifically then about Islamic fundamentalism – yet, my definition of a terrorist is someone who tries to break apart society by striking at the cracks. Or in the case of the murder of Jo Cox – those that try to fix them.
They attempt to create a paradox of polarisation in which the differences within society become its weakness – instead of its strength.
Yet now It is simply not enough to see Thomas Mair as symptom of the paradox created by terrorism alone. Jo Cox was not a civilian – she was a politician.
Commentators questioned the origins of the paradox.
The difference between straightforward condemnable terrorist attacks by foreign influenced individuals – and those of Thomas Mair – is that society itself is to blame. From the government to media to the street.
The paradox of polarisation has been pushed, perpetrated and peddled by politicians, for far too long.
For just one example, when David Cameron declares the death of multiculturalism, he may well believe that it is just pandering to a policy. But in reality, Politicians have turned the inevitability of our collective future, our identity, into toxic political point scoring.
Simply put, it is the propagation of hate. And as Brendan Cox has said, it is poisonous.
David Cameron, our leader, declaring the death of multiculturalism – gives oxygen to those that find their identity within what divides us – fear and hate and the habit of those thoughts.
In the face of such ‘terror’ – it can become an act of courage to tell the truth – that those that are afraid. Afraid that our democracies principles challenge their identities. Identities derived from divisions. Are those that will commit terrorist attacks.
Jo Cox, it seems, was the personification of a politician that held no prejudices – in terms of rhetoric – she was poorly protected by her peers.
The E.U referendum.
The progressive left must learn their lesson that a myth cannot be prosecuted by facts – it must offer an alternative identity.
In 2010, a report by the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution concluded that “we regret the ad hoc manner in which referendums have been used, often as a tactical device, by the government of the day.”
The murder of Jo Cox is an example of what happens when good people do nothing, choose to make this a turning point.
Wherever you can, challenge those that seek to create divisions. If you see politicians vilify someone or something, then question it. Fight against a paradox of polarisation. Offer love where others push hate and watch the world change around you.
The way we react to terrorist attacks, the paradox of polarisation and the evolution of our democracy is how we can begin to put the great back into our identity.
Because if you hadn’t noticed…
‘The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new is yet to be born. And in the interregnum, a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.’